Crovo brothers of Melrose doing their part in pandemic
Published May 8, 2020
By JENNIFER GENTILE
MELROSE—Melrose natives Marc Crovo and Greg Crovo are helping to ease the pinch of struggling businesses with an innovative fundraiser.
The brothers have launched the “Local & Loyal” t-shirt campaign through their Northmen Outfitters organization to benefit small businesses. The duo has designed shirts are with a logo of the state of Massachusetts on it along with the words “Local & Loyal” and #SupportSmallBusinesses. For $25, customers will see $11 go to the business of their choice with $10 devoted to the creation of the shirt and $4 for shipping.
With federal aid an uncertainty and re-opening days undetermined, business owners are in a critical make-or-break time to stay afloat and that’s something they thought about when they created the initiative. Marc Crovo, a 2004 Melrose High grad, spoke about their mission. “We’re always talking about ‘control what you can control’,” he says. “The adverse conditions that all essential workers and small business owners are operating under, gives everyone an opportunity to be creative, think outside the box, and make small simple adjustments. From a business standpoint, this fundraiser was a win/win.”
According to Greg, a 2009 Malden Catholic grad, the result has been tremendous. “The response has been pure awesomeness! We are in a battle. From a numbers standpoint, we have close to 75 businesses donated to. Customers are super excited. Small business owners are very grateful. A lot are struggling and they’re rolling their sleeves up and finding a way to weather the storm.”
This initiative has assisted over seventy small businesses so far. In Melrose specifically, customers have purchased shirts for Affairs To Remember, Erik’s Barbershop, Fades Away Barbershop, Gloss Nail Spa, Green Street Natural Foods, Halo Studio, Hinge Fitness, Liberty Bell Roast Beef, Mother’s Pizza, Petrone’s Pizza, Wood & Fire Pizza, Porcaro Plumbing & Heating and Fitness Liberation.
Both Crovos are Melrose products and athletes who went on to play college ball at St Anselm’s (Greg, hockey) and Salem State (Marc, baseball). Marc runs Viking Baseball, so as a business owner, he can sympathize and believes that gestures like this will help small businesses bear the brunt of this economic struggle. The duo grew up on Laurel Street in Melrose and recalls frequenting Richdale Market at The Common as kids, which nurtured their appreciation for small business. Marc notes, “These small biz shops are what make Melrose special. You name a childhood memory or a shared story and we bet the story starts or ends with a beloved Melrose small biz as your setting.”
Both hope that the Local & Loyal campaign will remind folks to get creative, pivot, adapt, and find a way to help. Says Greg. “True struggle leads to true growth. We will all be stronger after this pandemic ends.”
For those who’d like to join in the initiative and make an impact visit www.northmenoutfitters.com. Those who would like to Venmo, they can utilize @northmensales. Please include a shipping address and business of choice.